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IRacing noob question

Race Ace

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Mar 31, 2013
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I have seen lots of racing sims out there that require you to join leagues and commit to schedules, so i was wondering what Iracing is like, do i need join a league or can i just log in and race casually?
 

Eckhart von Glan

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Dec 29, 2006
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if you want to race online casually, iRacing is the ultimate spot (however, it is also by far the most expensive one). You never actually buy the game and / or the additional content, you buy the right to use it for a given time (a month, three months, a year, two years whatever scheme you buy into). Once that time is up, access to "your" iRacing is blocked unless you buy new time.
Once you are in, iRacing offers you a) a racing car simulation, b) a base of sth. like six cars and six tracks (some road / some oval), c) the opportunity to buy access to more cars and tracks (43 cars / 68 tracks in all), d) most importantly: access to servers which run 24hours and offer numerous races simultaneously, bot road and oval.
There are many series to pick from, each run one or more cars on twelve different tracks in twelve weeks (we are currently at the third track / third week for each series). You can choose between playing solo, doing open practice for one of the series with other players, doing a time attack (given number of laps must be done solo as quickly as possible with no mistakes allowed), setting a qualify time for a race or doing a "real" race. In the latter three events, the so called "safety rating" system is applied: every infringement (off track, losing control, hitting another player's car etc.) is automatically recorded and measured against your performance so far. You need to get a good SR (safety rating) to be able to play many of the cars not available in the basic outfit, so everybody keeps an eye on their safety rating most all of the time. This little trick makes for a lot of clean racing :)
There is a second counter ticking away in the background, your iRating. This measures your strength on the track and is reevaluated every time you participate in a race session. Grids are formed according to this iRating, so you have a fair chance of ending up on a grid with players your own size (which can make for fun, close racing). At the end of the race, your result is measured / compared to all other players on this grid and you are either awarded or deducted iRating points, much as the ranking system works in professional tennis.
Also, you score championship points in each race event, the higher the cumulative iRating of the field, the more points scored. These points add up to a championship at the end of the season (and with all players divided into 12 divisions according to their past performance, even a mediocre player like me has won a couple of these already in the lower divisions).
So: it is VERY expensive, but the iRating and safety rating system together with a solid number of players make sure that you very often end up in a full grid with chaps your size who mostly play fair.
As an offline game it does not work, since there is no AI at all, just solo training. Online is where it's at.
 
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Eckhart von Glan

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nice, iRacing just today anounced a three month offer at 80% off:"To celebrate this partnership iRacing is offering new members the chance to join iRacing at more than 80% off the normal price. Use promo code PR-IMSA2015 when signing up at www.iracing.com/membership to get a 3-month membership for just $5."
 
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AndyC1976

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Mar 17, 2015
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Thanks for that promo code...was debating whether to give iracing a try and that just made it a no brainer!
 

Baz Cutting

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Oct 8, 2010
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iracing is by far the best sim out there for realism and do give some great discounts for new accounts.get on it mate and mayb see you on track sometime
 
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AndyC1976

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I think I'm already in love with iRacing! I'm sure it will end up costing me a fortune in content and subs, but for this many racing opportunities I think it will still be value for money.
 

Baz Cutting

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Oct 8, 2010
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its the best sim i play by far,i fought i was a great sim racer on other games then iracing made me even faster n smoother.tbh dont think it matters how much it costs when u get this much enjoyment
 

Eckhart von Glan

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I think I'm already in love with iRacing! I'm sure it will end up costing me a fortune in content and subs, but for this many racing opportunities I think it will still be value for money.
figure it out this way: i pay 45 euros for a year (because i always use the black friday two years for one offer) and get sth. like 17 euros worth of stuff every three months, so about 70 euros more. my total expenditure per year is thus 115 euros, however i get 8 euros every three months for having been active (completed two series or more), i get 4 euros every year for still being around and from time to time i can stockpile some cash and get a little bonus (usually another 2x4 euros each year). this adds up to about 45 euros in bonusses (which of course is rubbish since iRacing is a monopolist, but it makes me feel good to view it this way :) ). so i end up with 70 euros each year for having 24 hours of service each day. let's say i play 300 days a year, i end up paying 2.5 eurocents for every day i play iRacing. not really expensive.
however, the first year certainly works out more expensive, but once you have a solid base of often used tracks and some cars more than base content, you should be fine.
glad you like it, try going back to AI in three months and you will truly appreciate it.
 
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Patrick Moore

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Nov 20, 2010
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figure it out this way: i pay 45 euros for a year (because i always use the black friday two years for one offer) and get sth. like 17 euros worth of stuff every three months, so about 70 euros more. my total expenditure per year is thus 115 euros, however i get 8 euros every three months for having been active (completed two series or more), i get 4 euros every year for still being around and from time to time i can stockpile some cash and get a little bonus (usually another 2x4 euros each year). this adds up to about 45 euros in bonusses (which of course is rubbish since iRacing is a monopolist, but it makes me feel good to view it this way :) ). so i end up with 70 euros each year for having 24 hours of service each day. let's say i play 300 days a year, i end up paying 2.5 eurocents for every day i play iRacing. not really expensive.
however, the first year certainly works out more expensive, but you once you have a solid base of often used tracks and some cars more than base content, you should be fine.
glad you like it, try going back to AI in three months and you will truly appreciate it.
big +1 to Eckhart's and Baz's comments on iracing.

the bolded part (my emphasis) in Eckhart's post says it all! I was skeptical about the service, but after a few months I found myself spending more and more of my sim time on iracing. At this time I would estimate that I spend about 75% of my simracing time on iracing events.
: )
 

xnorb

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In the latter three events, the so called "safety rating" system is applied: every infringement (off track, losing control, hitting another player's car etc.) is automatically recorded and measured against your performance so far. You need to get a good SR (safety rating) to be able to play many of the cars not available in the basic outfit, so everybody keeps an eye on their safety rating most all of the time. This little trick makes for a lot of clean racing :)
I don't understand why this system isn't in every single racing sim out there.
Not having such a system in place gives players the message: "Ya, go ahead and ram all others off the track, that's what you're supposed to do"

The regular argument "Just join leagues" simply doesn't work if you're having a somewhat stressful life and can only spend time online when you happen to have an hour or two available.

So, it just proves that every racing sim needs this system in place.
80% of Assetto Corsa MP races have a restart vote going on after half the field crashed in corner 1...
 
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Eckhart von Glan

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I don't understand why this system isn't in every single racing sim out there.
I guess because they mainly sell a game which is nice as a standalone and has online added, while iRacing sell a service which is based in online gaming and does no standalone worth mentioning. The incentive to use such a system is simply not there since most players play the game solo and only sometimes venture online. I suppose.
 

Eckhart von Glan

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At this time I would estimate that I spend about 75% of my simracing time on iracing events. : )
make that 98% for me. I do about an hour most evenings to relax after work, so not motivated enough for leagues. That makes iRacing perfect for me. It's a bit of a pity because AC is a fine game, but there you go, the non-club online racing is ...